This weekend I decided to clean up the yard a bit and do some of my later in the season chores a little early. One of these on the list was trimming my new (second year) raspberry bushes. The first step was getting these bushes under control, if I had a larger space I probably would build a more stable construction for better airflow and make picking easier…but given my small space I simply took a couple nails and a couple of lengths of twine and loosely supported the stems to keep them from falling over into our lawn. Finish by tying the twine around the nails and task number one is done.
The production of raspberries goes in a two year cycle. The first year you get vegetative stalks (all green no flowers or berries) and the second year these previous vegetative stalks become flowering stalks and produce nice delicious berries. During this time more vegetative stalks develop and the process repeats itself. Once a flowering stalk completes delivering all of its berries it will turn brown and die off. Taking care of these was my first task. All this requires is finding the flowing stalks and cut them at their base, easy way to go is to cut anything brown and then pull them out (using gloves is advised)
This part was pretty easy since I only have a few flowering stalks the first year but you can see from the picture above I should get a decent crop of raspberries now the plant is becoming more established.
Now I simply let the plants do their thing and when the leaves fall off I will trim them to a height of about 5 feet, next spring given them a healthy scoop of alfalfa pellets and wait for the bounty of sweetness to come in next summer.